Despite her real-life family drama, Modern Family's Ariel Winter is in high spirits. Just two days after her mother, Chrisoula "Crystal" Workman, was denied custody of the 15-year-old actress, the TV star praised her older sister, Shanelle Gray, via Instagram on Saturday, Aug. 3.
"Happy birthday to the most amazing mister, (sister/mommy) on the planet @shanelle_gray ! I love you so much," Winter wrote. "You have helped me become a better person and grow into the woman I want to be. You are my inspiration. The things you have done for me, I'm honestly speechless. There are no words to describe how grateful I am to have you. You've taught me so much about being a classy young woman and about life. If I could ever be as amazing as you are and as amazing of a mother, I'd be incredibly lucky. I look up to you so much."
She added, "Anytime I need a hug or a laugh or if I'm just down and need someone, I can just talk to you and I'm instantly better. You've been my best friend, my rock, and will always be my heart. You deserve the absolute world, and are the brightest star in the sky. You're BEAUTIFUL inside and out. So talented and humble and special. I will always be here for you Snelly. ALWAYS. You can always count on me, because it'll always be you and me."
Winter's relationship with her mother has been strained since the young star was removed from Workman's home in November 2012 in light of allegations of physical and emotional abuse.
According to TMZ, Workman recently filed legal documents for custody of Winter, but was denied at the end of July. The actress will continue to live with her sister, Gray, who's been given an extended guardianship over the actress. Workman will have a custody trial in September.